Gwaun Vale Caravan Park, Llanychaer, Fishguard, Pembrokeshire SA65 9TA
Think of Pembrokeshire and you think of the coastline. And rightly so. Perhaps the least trodden-upon section of the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path is that wild and windswept area in the north, between Cardigan (Aberteifi) and Fishguard (Abergwaun). The cliffs are rougher and higher than their softer southern siblings up here, and around Newport (Trefdraith) you can’t help but notice that some quite lofty hills come down to the sea to dip their toes in the surf.
These rounded mounds are the rather grandly named Preseli Hills and the main valley that cuts its way into their very heart is carved out by the Afon Gwaun River. Buried in its green folds is the Gwaun Vale Touring Park. The site lies on steep, terraced ground facing northeast, with a magnificent view of the Preseli Hills and just a glimpse of the sea from the very top of the site.
It seems odd, but satisfying somehow, that a campsite in Pembrokeshire can have its roots so thoroughly in the hills rather than by the sea. It is quite possible, in mid-August, to set off from Gwaun Vale on Shanks’s Pony and walk all day in the Preseli Hills without seeing another human soul. You might spot the odd hill-pony perhaps, but nothing on two legs.
On reflection, this is more a probability than possibility, and these grand little mountains are tremendous for those striding-out, big-mileage, kind of days. The valley itself, Cwm Gwaun, is like a lost world, where the 21st century hasn’t really had any impact as yet.
At first glance there seems to be nothing very remarkable about the site. But once pitched and the view absorbed, a quick stroll around the gardens that surround the children’s play area reveals that the site maintenance, or the planting therein, is something of a labour of love by the owner Margaret Harries. Facilities are nicely maintained, with everything on tap to make camping life as stress-free as possible. Despite all this good country air and rural outlook, Gwaun Vale is only just over a mile from the sea – where the briny washes up in the very cute harbour at Fishguard, and plenty of hostelries offer tempting eats and drinks.
The whole of Pembrokeshire is certainly easily accessible from Gwaun Vale by car, but this place also deserves some serious local inspection, too – so be sure to take your comfiest walking boots.
The Owner Says
With its roots planted firmly in the hills and not by the sea, Gwaun Vale opens your eyes to a new way to explore the beautiful Pembrokeshire landscape.
Loved this site. Went for lots of beautiful walks. Spent a day at the local reservoir and countrypark. If you are looking for beautiful views from the minute you wake up this is the site for you. Site is well maintained and owners are very helpful. Lots of tourist info to make sure you have plenty to do.
We stayed here and had a fantastic holiday. We were a family of 2 adults 3 children and the site is very clean friendly and peaceful. The gardens are beautiful so many different flowers. The site is well kept and we will definitely return and is highly recommend.